India shouldn’t worry about our ties to Pakistan, says Russia
Russia said on Monday it was committed to developing its relationship with Pakistan, although India should not worry about such moves as they are within the framework of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) and aim to ensure regional stability.
Moscow’s efforts to develop relations with Islamabad fit with the core values of the India-Russia strategic partnership, Russian Ambassador Nikolay Kudashev told a news conference. His deputy, Roman Babushkin, said that Russia’s ties with Pakistan were “independent by nature” and that the two sides had a trade and economic agenda.
“If you take a look at the essence of our ties with Pakistan and the priorities we are committed to, you can easily see that they would correspond to the core values of Russia and India, especially privileged and strategic partnership, issues such as regional stability, transparency. , fight terrorism, drugs and crime first and foremost, ”Kudashev said in response to a question about a perceived increase in ties between Moscow and Islamabad.
Economic cooperation between Russia and Pakistan, Kudashev said, was key to progress and predictability. “Our ties with Pakistan, naturally, are no exception to the values of our ties with India,” he added.
Babushkin said that India should not be concerned about Russia’s commitment to respect the sensibilities of any other country.
“Russia is very cautious when it comes to respecting sensitivities, but at the same time we consider our relations with Pakistan to be independent by nature and we also have a bilateral trade and economic agenda. We are quite committed to developing this relationship, including from the point of view that Pakistan is a partner country under the SCO, ”he said.
The SCO comprises eight member states: India, Kazakhstan, China, Kyrgyzstan, Pakistan, Russia, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan;
“The basic principle of Russian foreign policy is to have bilateral relations not directed against any other country. This is the very important principle that we are following when it comes to cooperation with all countries of the world, including Pakistan, ”he added.
Babushkin said that a recent exercise between the Russian and Pakistani armies focused on fighting terrorism. “This kind of collaboration, including the exchange of experiences and capacity development, is quite natural for all SCO member states. We have reached an advanced level of exercises with India, including all three services. All of this is important from the point of view of how we proceed to ensure regional stability. Promoting dialogue and a unified agenda is also essential for the same reasons, ”he said.
India has in the past raised concerns about possible arms deals between Russia, the supplier of most weapons systems used by the Indian armed forces, and Pakistan.
In response to another question, Babushkin said that Russia and India consult closely on the situation in Afghanistan.
Current negotiations between the Taliban and the United States are taking place on the basis of agreements between the two parties. Russia wants these negotiations to be successful and lead to a “progressive solution in Afghanistan” so that the war-torn country can have a “maximum possible representative government” that cares for the interests of all national and ethnic groups, Babushkin said. .